Osteoarthritis, commonly referred to as just arthritis or OA, affects about 2 million Australians. It most commonly occurs in the knees, hips, and hands. It’s more common in women and older people.
OA used to be considered a degenerative disease or ‘wear and tear’, but it is now thought to be a situation where the joint is actually working extra hard to repair itself.
Rather than assuming your pain is arthritis, its’s important to be properly assessed by a health professional as it can often be confused with other conditions and injuries.
Rather than reducing your activities because of pain, it’s suggested in most cases to continue or modify your activities. The primary treatment recommendation for arthritis is exercise. It’s been shown to reduce pain and increase function better than pain medication. Other treatment options include weight loss, cognitive behavioural therapy and walking or support aids.
During your visit to your physiotherapist, you will be asked a lot of questions about your pain to correctly diagnose your condition, they will look at your movement, set goals with you and get you back on track to doing the activities you enjoy.